hip hop

Hip Hop Sampling 101: 6 Top Hip Hop Samples


When hip hop was nearly beginning, it was very much compulsory to keep a compilation of samples and drum breaks. But as time passes by, the use of the same songs repeatedly became less indispensable because of the modern sampling technology and the overture of live instrumentation.

Hip Hop samples are actually bits of recorded music taken out from previous copies to be used in creating new songs. Mostly, these extracts came from 60’s soul and funk records of the 70’s. Breakbeats started in 1972 when DJ Kool Herc began using two turntables to combine records collectively and produce one long breakbeat. This has become popular to knock over and was significantly used to build the basis of hip hop.

Nowadays, several top hip hop samples are being used to create blends or mix for a new kind of music.

However, one must also know the primary means of producing samples:

• Ensure that the samples you choose will suit your style. Thus, it is very important that you keep listening to a variety of samples in order to know how each would sound. Remember, you have to express the mood you want to suggest and the emotions you want to convey on your song.

• It is also important that you have the software, which will help you out in creating your sample.

• Always check the format of the song you want to sample. The MP3 format is not well-matched with most software and typically just transfer your sample to MP3.

Samples are generally taken from “scratch”. It can be produced in several ways using a variety of instruments, downloaded through internet, or resourcefully bought by anybody.

Here are some of the top hip hop samples that have been used or still being used at present:

1. Hung Up On My Baby (Isaac Hayes) – this specially smooth dance is behind the Ghetto Boys’ Mind Playin’ Tricks on Me.

2. Ready Or Not, Here I Come (The Delfonics) – This music sample was actually made popular by Timberland when he arranged his partner Missy Elliott with the wonderful hit for Sock It 2 Me. This became so hot which turned out to be Missy Elliot’s best work. Da Brat was even invited on it.

3. Think About It (Lyn Collins) – Rob Base & DJ E-Z Rock’s popular hip hop club hit “It Takes Two” has used the funk classic beat “Think (About It) as its loop sample.

4. NT (Kool & The Gang) – This features one of the ever-present drum breaks that you could hear in almost every hip hop song. Its first main hip hop appearance was heard as a sample on NWA’s “Gangsta Gangsta”.

5. Ashley’s Roach Clip (Chuck Brown and The Soul Searchers) – This sample continues to rock on air. It was notably used in a minor hit known as Girls Around the World by R&B singer Lloyd. Way back in 1987, it found its initial and much-loved use on the classic Paid in Full by Eric B. and Rakim.

6. Impeach The President (The Honey Drippers) – This seemed to be preferred mostly by everyone to sample it rather than remake it. This was not only famously used in hip hop, but also in R&B and other genres. Several hip hop songs have sampled this that include Mr. Loveman by Shaggy, Bitch by Meredith Brooks, and Janet Jackson’s That’s The Way Love Goes.

The use of top hip hop samples in music production still refuses to die. Until now, beat makers keep on utilizing tools, gathering and creating sounds, producing effects, and eventually prepare the stage for the musical satisfaction of the audience.

Source by Dwight Noah

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Mitchel Turner



I’m a journalist from Oxford specializing in hip-hop and culture.